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Dual Mode Radiation Sensor for UAS Platforms
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1  University of Nevada Las Vegas


Remote radiation sensing technologies are important for radiation safety and environmental security applications. A dual mode Cs2LiYCl6:Ce3+ (CLYC) sensor was developed for simultaneous neutron measurements and gamma-ray spectroscopy. To keep users away from the hazardous areas, an unmanned aerial system (UAS) was used as a mobile sensor platform. The sensor package was integrated into the multicopter platform as a 'plug-and-fly' component allowing supports easy plugging and unplugging of the radiation sensor into the robotic platform in the field conditions. The measured photon energy resolution of the CLYC sensor is less than 5% at 662 keV. The detection of neutrons was achieved via 6Li(n,alpha)3H reaction. The sensor's signal communication and data fusion was designed using Robot Operating System (ROS) framework. The on-board signal analysis suite programmed as ROS functions in this sensor package includes the neutron-photon pulse shape discrimination (PSD) and the identification of photopeaks in the gamma spectrum. The time stamp and the GPS data were added to the resulting data of the automated analysis of sensor's signals. This data were reported to the user for real time awareness of the monitored area and for further analysis in temporal and spatial domains, and also in radiation mapping and source search tasks.

Keywords: Radiation sensor; dual mode; neutrons; gamma rays; UAS